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The College of Continuing Education Sucks

The College of Continuing Education Sucks. I paid them thousands of dollars for a course on UNIX system administration and C/C++ programming. I was out of work at the time and wanted a certificate telling potential employers that I knew at least a little about the work I was applying for. The class was half administration and half programming. The administration portion was competently taught, but on obsolete (SCO) software. Ok, UNIX is UNIX, even if it is a few years out of date. The programming half of the class, however, was taught by a math professor from the University of St. Cloud who barely knew C and knew less about C++. And UNIX completely baffled him. After an initial attempt to work with UNIX, he tried to teach the class UNIX programming on Microsoft Windows. This made me unhappy. I complained to the program administrator and asked for a refund. He refused. He did offer to let me repeat the course, but by then I had gotten a job (no thanks to that program) and didn't have two months to devote to what may too have been a waste of time.

Oh, did I mention that the cce.umn.edu Sucks?


While I too would have been unhappy with the course as you describe it, taking the course showed initiative.

You obviously had a bad experience...and you should have tried harder to get your money back. I have a degree from the college of continuing education and had a great experience. They have lots of great programs, you just happened to get one bad one. And it was years ago...let it go.

Jim, I see that you work for the College of Continuing Education and so are not exactly unbiased...

Sounds like I was lucky! For me, the Unix/C++ 8-week certification program was a total success. Our C++ programming instructor was extremely competent as both a programmer and a teacher. One of my best memories from that training was spending lunch break hearing "in the trenches" stories from her, about various challenges she'd faced in real-life work experience.

I was also very appreciative of the job placement assistance I received -- the program director had a good long talk with me to figure out what sort of companies and positions I should look for. That conversation provided useful guidance for my job search, and also a couple of specific leads that the program director thought might be right for me. I followed up on those leads and had a good offer from one of them even before the training was over.

Although I've never used C++ in the workplace (that employer promptly sent me to Java training), the general object-oriented concepts and design pattern awareness that I got in the C++ training have been a good foundation for my subsequent Java programming career. And even though I didn't go into system administration, there have been many times when it was handy to be comfortable on the Unix command line.

I am sorry your experience was so bad -- and I hope that your class gave blunt evaluations so that the program knew to never hire that "teacher" again.